RECENTLY I RECEIVED a postcard from my vet’s office saying that my cat Daisy was due for her annual rabies shot this month. Being a conscientious and dutiful pet owner, I called and made an appointment for today. I was just about to start the ordeal of getting Daisy into her carrier, something she despises and with good reason, since it never means anything fun will happen, when I stopped and thought about it for a minute. Daisy just turned 20 and barely sets even one paw outside these days. Just how the heck would she get rabies?
A quick Google search netted dozens of horror stories about older cats and reactions to rabies vaccines: This one died right away, that one got a horrible tumor and then died, another got deathly ill for months incurring hundreds of dollars in treatment, besides that’s how vets make most of their money, it’s a scam, blah, blah, blah. While some of it was nonsense, a lot of it sounded legitimate. What to do?
I called the vet’s office and spoke with a technician who said it was true that my cat didn’t actually need the vaccine at this point in her life but still, if a rabid bat entered our house and bit her she’d be toast. I said if a rabid bat came into our house my primary concern would not be about whether or not Daisy would get rabies — after all, she’s already outlived the average feline lifespan while I am actually hoping to go a few more years without foaming at the mouth. Also, a bat inside my house? I would have to move.
I postponed Daisy’s appointment pending further deliberation, but now I’m wondering how bats get inside houses anyway.
— Andrea Rouda
Andrea Rouda blogs at The Daily Droid.